Belfast Telegraph

Top seed just too strong for battler Karola Bejenaru

By John Flack

Karola Bejenaru bowed out of the $10,000 tournament in Madrid yesterday when she lost to the top seed in the second round.

She went down 6-1, 6-2 to Greek player Maria Sakkar, who has won four such tournaments already this year, but it was a case of mission accomplished for the 17-year-old Windsor player.

By reaching the main draw and winning her first round match she has claimed her first world ranking point at professional level.

Only briefly, when she had a break point in the second game of the first set, did Bejenaru look capable of causing an upset.

But Sakkar saved it and went on to cruise to victory with five breaks of serve.

However the Belfast-based Romanian and her coach Przemek Stec were in positive mood after events earlier in the week.

"I was happy that I got through to the main draw and now I know that I am capable of coming through qualifiers at this level," said Bejenaru.

"Getting into the second round of this tournament has given me confidence and self-belief as well as valuable experience. I learned a lot from playing the top seed and it has shown me what I need to do to get better and go further in the next tournament."

Stec revealed that his star pupil is likely to concentrate on playing more professional tournaments after competing on the junior ITF circuit for most of the summer.

"I will be sitting down with her and her father next week after she returns home from another tournament in Madrid to discuss the way forward." said the Pole.

"But it is likely she will take part in more pro tournaments to try and win some more matches and improve her ranking."

Belfast Telegraph

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